Does Indelible Fade?


November 8, 1999
 Monday

I wanted to wait until Tuesday (as was Tom’s careful consideration) to respond to her, but time has has already gone by, and I was intrigued to know better how she left. I went over to Lincoln Hall’s computer lab tonight to just write an e-mail to her and make sure it sounded better than what I had sent previously.  Something to match her elegant works.  I told myself, “Write it now, send it tomorrow,” but once it was finished I sent it anyway.  Here are my ramblings:


Sidney,

*I wasn’t going to send these words until the morning (some kind of one-day rule or something), but perhaps we will both agree, outside of the world’s social rules of the young, that perhaps enough time has passed already.  I wanted you to know how I felt so that you will know:

Before I begin, can I tell you something?  You kick ass.

That said, I can go on.  I do write lyrics for songs, and have been up to that for about a year and a half.  The CD I am trying to get together with a friend is called Tempt the Fates.  I suppose it has Dave Matthews, Dylan, Petty, and Beatles influences, music I have become deeply involved in.  To give you an idea of what I’ve been working on, here is “While Away.”

“While Away” (1999)
-W. Carlson-

Skip rock
Oh how pretty
One, three
Oh how rightly
That is goes down
Down down down
Never to speak again
Repel old sin
Bare the brunt and steal the grin
How far flung
That the young
Do dance that way
To go
To win
Today
The steps are so far
From the ramparts it’s clear to see
The steps that are so far

Young one
Quickly growing
One day
You’ll be going
Into this world
High high high
Never to land again
And sense this will make to you

While away with my lover
While away with your cares on a string
As I guess to the nature
Of what brought me to you
While away with me lover, my lover
While we while away the day and fades away

Time flies
Oh so quickly
Tick tock
It keeps ringing
Out of my mind
Out out out
Never to come again
Forget the sin
Loose the brunt but keep the grin
How absurd
That the young
Don’t dance more now
Before
They’re gone
For good
The pains are so far
From the dream days it’s all so clear to see

While away with my lover
While away with your cares on a string
As I guess to the nature
Of what brought me to you
While away with me lover, my lover
While we while away the day and fades away

Lady
Dear sweet lady
So soon
You’ll be moving
Out of my world
Far far far
And then sense this will make to you
And then sense this will make to you

But back to some prose.  What’s another question I could answer… I rushed Pi Kappa Alpha, or the Pikes.  What made me what to do it?  They have been a part of my life since almost the beginning of college, mostly off to the side, because my two best friends–my other two Musketeers–joined while we were freshmen.  My philosophy had always been the Greek system wasn’t something I needed–and still do not–it’s just fun, at times.  It was something to work towards and through, and I haven’t had anything like that since baseball. Did I here the word “college” from far off Knox?  Yes, of course, but it is not the same.

But the real reason I wrote today was to thank you for writing, and I have to apologize too.  I was also hurt in my own way as well that you were becoming comfortable in your life at Knox and didn’t feel the need to write after time and distance began to grow.  Last semester, in the spring, was an  extremely difficult one for me personally, with one of my guys becoming an RA and leaving me and the other going home for a semester.  Even though I have other friends, I missed them a lot.  It’s also didn’t help that my grandfather was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s late in the spring, and that sent to aback, because he is one of the greatest people in the world.  So I am writing this to you late after getting the e-card you sent me, for which the gesture was never returned.

I thought, as I was reading your letter, that you had gotten into my mind and had rifled through my thoughts.  I don’t see many from Elmwood anymore as well, and this summer I saw only Colin perhaps twice.  I used to have nightmares too, on occasion, if it makes you feel better, but they have waned considerably.  Actually, it was a dream that made me want to write to you.  We talked briefly in it about what I don’t remember, but it was great.

I can’t remember high school as perfect, but it is the closest I have ever come to perfection.  I would like to see you too.  At one time all I could do was remember, and then came the point when I could only remember remembering.  I had wanted to write many times before, but I didn’t know if you would want to hear from me, someone from years ago.  I also understand how you felt when writing your e-mail, because I felt it when writing mine.

But, yes, screw e-mail.  I think I can remember your voice, but I could use a reminder.

-Will


That about says it all.  Maybe I should have waited until tomorrow to send it, but I didn’t want another night to go by to say I felt the same and wanted to see her as well.

Walking back from Lincoln I felt very fortunate.  I hadn’t known if I really would ever see her again.  Actually, since bringing back my journals with me from home a few weeks ago, I had begun to have questions. You see, Tom and Collinsville are experts on my own history now because of this, which is both strange and comforting, and always ask me to further fill them in on the cracks I never put to paper. Was it all as big a deal as I made it out to be then, I at least had to ask myself.  Was some of it in my mind?  Most importantly, was I the only one along for this long ride?  I had begun to ponder if Sidney might have cared in the way the pages sometimes hinted at.  I wondered if I had blown it all out of proportion.  Yet with some age and experience with me now as ballast, I knew reality was somewhere in between.  But that’s what time does, I suppose.  You begin to question things that had forever been indelible truths.

Getting back home, I circled around the house and say down in my chair on the porch alone.  Putting my feet on the ledge and shoving my hands in my pockets to keep warm, I watched a few cars go by, as they in turn illuminated the street and homes and with their lights.  One or two stars were out, as well as a glint of moon.  Everything with completely quiet.  No one was still up inside the house.  The rooms behind me were completely dark as I sat in silence.

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